Every year, the NFL sites here at SB Nation conduct a two-round mock draft leading up to the draft. In the first round, our selection for the Colts was Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen; in the second round, our pick was Washington cornerback Sidney Jones.
Jones fell to the Colts’ second round pick, number 46 overall, becasue of his injury, and that’s when our own Stephen Reed decided to take the risk and select him. Here’s part of what Reed had to say about the pick:
As for Jones' ability, the tape speaks for itself. He consistently displayed the capability to be a lockdown, press-man corner. The perfect fit for Chuck Pagano's defense. Jones has natural coverage skills with great anticipation and field awareness. In the pass-happy Pac-12, teams simply avoided his side of the field. Prior to his injury, Jones was considered one of the top corners in this draft and likely a top-20 pick. If he returns even close to form, this is an absolute steal for Ballard and the Colts at another position of significant need. Given how players recover from this type of injury, I'll take my risk with the hard-working Jones over the off-field concerns of the other two.
You can head here to read all of what Reed had to say about the pick, as well as analysis from SB Nation draft analyst Dan Kadar.
Ultimately, this pick came down to what type of risk the Colts should take in the second round. No prospect is ever going to be perfect, and so there are going to be at least some risks with each of them. With Sidney Jones, the main concern is the torn Achilles he suffered at his pro day earlier this year, which likely will push him out of the first round in a draft filled with cornerback depth. An Achilles injury is a pretty significant one and therefore Jones likely will miss most, if not all, of his rookie season, so that’s a risk for whichever team takes him.
Here’s why it could be a worthwhile risk for the Colts, however: they need cornerback help, they need value, and they’re not likely to be contenders this year anyway. For the Colts, this draft should be all about adding as much defensive talent and as many playmakers as possible, and a lot of that has to do with value picks. That was the idea behind our selection of Jonathan Allen in round one, and it’s the same idea behind the selection of Sidney Jones in round two. Chris Ballard, in his first year as GM, has the luxury of using a high pick on a guy like Jones, since Ballard has job security and is in the midst of a rebuild. As Reed said, if Jones can bounce back from his injury well and return to form, this will be an absolute steal for the Colts, since Jones was expected to be a high first round draft pick before his injury.
So for a team in the situation the Colts are in, with a need at cornerback, and with Sidney Jones dropping all the way to them at 46 in this mock draft, I think the pick makes sense. What are your thoughts on this pick for the Colts in the second round?